A Wisconsin judge on Feb. 11 denied two motions from prosecutors to issue a new arrest warrant and raise the bail for Kyle Rittenhouse, the teen from Illinois who is accused of fatally shooting two people during a riot in Wisconsin last August.
Judge Bruce Schroeder rejected the request from Kenosha County Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger to increase Rittenhouse’s $2 million bond by $200,000 and issue an arrest warrant for him after a prosecutor argued that he had violated conditions of his release.
Prosecutors accused the 18-year-old of violating his bond terms by failing to report to the court the address of a “safe house” to which he’s moved into in November.
But Rittenhouse’s attorneys argued that death threats to him and his family safety prompted him to conceal his whereabouts.
“Most people out on bond, we don’t know where they are,” Judge Schroeder said in a hearing which took place over Zoom.
“To issue a warrant now for a defendant who has appeared at every hearing, that would be breaking the law, and I’m not going to do it,” he added.
Schroeder did require Rittenhouse to register his current address with the court, but it will be kept under seal and only he and the Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department would have access to it.
Binger asked the judge to allow his office access to Rittenhouse’s address, to which Schroeder responded with, “it has nothing to do with you.”
Rittenhouse had traveled with a weapon on Aug. 25, 2020, from his home in nearby Antioch, Illinois, to racially charged protests in Kenosha, Wisconsin, prompted by the police shooting of Jacob Blake.
He is accused of murdering Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26, and injuring Gaige Grosskreutz with an AR-15-style rifle.
He has been charged in Kenosha County with first-degree homicide and five other criminal counts related to the shootings, however, Rittenhouse’s legal team has said their client feared for his life when he fired his semi-automatic rifle, and have indicated they plan to argue self-defense.
Rittenhouse was extradited in late October to Kenosha to face the charges.
Rittenhouse’s next scheduled court appearance is March 10, WISN reported.